The Difference Between Toning Up and Gaining Muscle
Last night when I wrote about exercise truths turned myths, and how health tips are always changing, I listed the main diet and health myths that came to my mind. One of those myths could be seen as confusing, as Freya and a couple others brought to my attention.
The Toning Myth:
The toning myth is that lifting very high reps with very low weight will tone you; and lifting heavier weights with very low reps will help you gain muscle.
This myth is a two-parter
- Muscle Fibers
Lifting low weights a lot of times over and over activates your slow twitch muscle fibers. In a nutshell, you won’t see too much “toning” happening with this kind of weight lifting. Perhaps at first you will, but soon your muscles will adapt to the low weights and your progress will hinder. In order to keep seeing more progress – or build more muscle– you’ll likely have to add on more weight. And yes, it’s true that you’ll likely see the biggest strength gains when lifting heavier weights.
2. Toning=Muscle Gaining
There’s really no difference between toning and gaining muscle. You can’t “tone” muscle or fat. You can only build muscle. When you think you’re just “toning,” you’re really building muscle (if you’re working hard enough for your fitness level, that is.) Plain and simple. So, when someone says they want to “tone up” what they’re really saying, whether they know it or not, is that they want to build some muscle. Some people, however, feel like they’re toned when they actually lose weight. When you lose fat, your muscle (even though there might not be any more of it than before you lost weight) is more easily seen. Some see this as looking more “toned.”
Hungry Hungry Paige-O
Now that we’ve got that covered, let’s move on to breakfast!
I thought up this breakfast on my way home from training this morning. I had a 7:00 client this morning, and spent the entire hour before I had to leave the house freaking out about a work deadline. Once the crisis was averted, I realized I took off without eating any breakfast. Oops.
I knew I wanted yogurt, and I knew I wanted oats. So, I put a 1/3 c. oats + 3/4 c. water in a measuring cup and microwaved it for 1:30. Then, I stirred in a little almond butter and honey, and topped it on about a 1/3 c. 2% plain Greek yogurt:
I swear there’s yogurt under there! This breakfast bowl was unbelievably good. It will definitely be a repeater
Time to seize the day and whatnot. Have a lovely one, friendly friends!